YOU CAN BE HAPPIER IF YOU DO YOGA.
When you find yourself in a stressful situation, in our modern society it is mostly, being overwhelmed with things we need to do in a certain time frame, our bodies have a physical reaction known as “fight or flight”, where our bodies` defense mechanism starts producing excessive amounts of cortisol and adrenaline.
If we don´t set these free naturally like for example, running away from a saber-tooth tiger, or climbing an enormous tree. These hormones stay trapped in our bodies.
If stressful situations become a regular occurrence,chronic stress with all of its physical and psychological side effects is a common outcome. Some of these include: insomnia, weak immune system, hormonal disturbance, heart problems, high blood pressure, balance problems, constant fatigue, occurrence of negative thoughts, struggling to concentrate, to showcase emotions and to make rational decisions.
Yoga gives us plenty techniques with which we can get rid of piled up stress and eliminate its consequences.
These techniques are very common in restorative yoga in which you work with round pillows, bolsters, straps and blocks as support.
The first pose to get rid of accumulated stress is the Child’s Pose. In this pose the body is deeply relaxed, which automatically lowers cortisol levels in our blood. It´s recommended to sty in this pose for 3 minutes.
This pose relaxes the pent up tension in the deep tissue around our spine, and releases tension built up in our hips. You should hold this pose for about 2 minutes on each side. Yoga should always be practiced symmetrically.
This pose relaxes the neck and the mind. With your legs in the butterfly position, it leads to a release of negative thoughts and fears that get piled up in the hip region throughout the years. You should hold this pose for at least 2 minutes.
With your legs wide apart and your body folded to the front, you free your hips, and tension in your inner thighs is released. This pose also relaxes the mind, and if you add deep breathing through the nose, it relaxes the whole body. 2 minutes in this pose and it will lead to the wanted effects.
The fish position frees the upper body. Your chest gets wider, your breaths become fuller and deeper, your arms, neck and shoulders become relaxed and you feel a heavy weight get lifted from your back. You should stay in this pose for 3 minutes.
This is an easy version of an upside down pose, in which your heart is higher than your head. The bolster beneath your hips gets rid of tension in your pelvis, and relaxes the lumbar part of your spine which is under constant pressure because of our lifestyle where we sit so often. Our whole body is in balance and we fill ourselves with energy. Since this pose doesn´t have any contradictions you can stay in it as long as you want to with a minimum of 3-5 minutes.
Pro Tip: If you don´t have a big bolster pillow you can replace it with a rolled up blanked or a big towel. Instead of the yoga block you can use a thick pillow.
As you can see, to improve your happiness you just need 15 minutes a day dedicated to yourself.